Heavy rain, flash flood warning

Fiji Meteorological Service director Ravin Kumar during a press conference in Nadi yesterday. Picture: BALJEET SINGH

SEA surges brought in by damaging swells, heavy rainfall that could lead to flash flooding and a strong wind warning for all land and sea areas of Fiji is expected to affect the country until Tuesday.
This was the warning issued by the Fiji Meteorological Service director Ravind Kumar yesterday.
He said mariners in small vessels should refrain from venturing out to sea, people and motorists to avoid crossing flooded areas and waterways and residents in flood and landslide prone areas should take the necessary precautions.
Mr Kumar said motorists travelling along the Queens Rd along the Coral Coast should be extra vigilant.
He said a “damaging heavy swell warning” remained in force for low-lying coastal areas of Kadavu, Beqa, Vatulele, Southern Lau Group, Mamanuca Group, Southern and Western Viti Levu.
“Expect 3.5m to 4.5m waves over open waters, which is likely to cause inundation of low-lying coastal areas especially during high tide this evening (last night) and tomorrow morning” he said.
“There is high chance that the waves riding on to the high tide reaching the coasts can over wash vegetation line and even on to the roads along the coral coast.”
The damaging heavy swells were expected to gradually start easing from Monday (tonight) night.
Mr Kumar added that a “heavy rain warning” was in force for the country, however, the Yasawa and Mamanuca Groups, eastern and interior parts of Viti Levu and Vanua Levu should expect squally thunderstorms.
“A ‘strong wind warning’ is now in force for land areas and waters of Fiji.
“On land areas, expect fresh to strong northeast to southeast winds with average speeds of 40km/hr and gusting to 55km/hr.”
Mr Kumar has urged the general public and mariners to take heed of all warnings issued by the Fiji Meteorological Service.